What Happens if I’m Injured in the Workplace?

Injured in the workplace? Know your rights. 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were over 2.9 million workplace injuries that occurred in the United States in 2015. Injuries on the job are usually covered under the workers’ compensation law. Workers’ compensation provides an injured worker certain benefits regardless of who is at if someone is injured in the workplace. Those benefits typically include medical expenses and a portion of the worker’s pay while injured.

Construction worker on the job

When to Pursue Legal Action If Injured in the Workplace

In cases where workers’ compensation is not enough, there is a possibility that an injury attorney can help you collect more money to help with your injuries and suffering. In order to do so, the workplace injury requires the element of “negligence” to be present. The alleged negligence also needs to be due to another person who was not your employer or coworker.

While compensation benefits provide an important baseline, they fall short of compensating the an employee injured in the workplace and their family of the full consequences of the injury. For example, workers’ compensation benefits do not provide compensation for the worker’s pain and suffering, which is typically the biggest consequence of an injury to you and your family. This shortfall can be devastating to an injured worker and their family.

Fortunately, an employee injured in the workplace is not limited to workers’ compensation benefits. If the injury occurred at least in part through the negligence of someone other than your employer or coworker, you may be able to pursue legal action to recover damages in excessive of workers’ compensation benefits.

Common Causes of Job Site Injuries

The majority of accident claims occur in industries where dangerous or heavy machinery is used, such as construction or farming. However, workplace injuries can happen in any type of work environment. Here are common causes of workplace injuries:

Equipment-related injuries: Forklift accidents, power tools failures, and unsafe equipment are the leading causes of workplace injuries. A nail gun could misfire, sending a nail into a body part. A forklift could malfunction and run over your foot. These types of injuries generally fall under the legal theory of product liability.

Fires, explosions or chemical exposure: Many workers must operate equipment that could catch fire, explode or leak. Refineries, chemical and manufacturing plants can  have industrial accidents. These accidents can cause great bodily harm within a certain radius of the explosion or leak.

Falling objects: Falling objects are another common cause of job site injuries. These types of accidents can happen in a blink of an eye and cause a lifetime of disability issues.

Workplace Injury Law Firm in Tacoma & Seattle

Often, it is difficult to determine who is legally to blame for causing an injury. This is where the support of an experienced and trusted personal injury attorney can help. If you were injured in the workplace, you should contact an experienced and trusted personal injury attorney. We can assess whether you can pursue damages in excess of workers’ compensation benefits.

My team and I at Evergreen Personal Injury Counsel can determine if you should pursue a third-party claim against whomever was negligently responsible for your pain and suffering. Give us a call at (253) 472-6000 to schedule a free consultation. We’ll sit down with you, look at the facts of your case and advise you on the best possible course of action with your workplace injury.